1984 Novel Review Essay, Research Paper
Powerful and eloquent describes the satirical novel, “Nineteen Eighty- Four”; written by George Orwell. The fact that it was written in 1949 is amazing as many of the things that Orwell prophesied have come to pass in the decades since. Nineteen Eighty-Four, is considered Orwell s greatest work; it has become a Bible for many around the world because it makes a bold statement about humanity. The book details life in a totalitarian society; it is neither light, happy or colourful yet we feel an urgency to continue reading , through the dreary narrative. We need to know if this is indeed what the future could hold.
Horror story, love story, suspense novel and historical satire-”Ninety Eighty-Four” is all of the above. Orwell creates a complete society in this book, his vivid imagination builds a world where language, governments, morals, rules are all reversed. There are four main characters; the protagonist, Winston Smith, his love interest, Julia, his friend and enemy, O Brien and the main character, the fictitious “Big Brother”
The author tells his tale through the eyes of Winston, a middle aged man. Winston doubts the righteousness of the totalitarian government that rules the superstate, Oceania. We follow this character through two phases. During the first phase he questions the government of Big Brother . During the second phase he rebels against this government. Winston questions whether or not he is the only person who remembers how things were in a time before “newspeak”, “thought police” and “Big Brother constantly watching everyone. He does not believe all the lies that he is forced read and write about . He constantly questions the slogan “War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength”. Winston also questions the purpose of being constantly at war, particularly when there is never a winner or loser. He questions the very life he is forced to lead. Winston s rebellion takes different forms ; he purchases and writes in a diary which is strictly forbidden. As he writes he realizes it is only a matter of time before the book and his writings will be discovered. He writes of private thoughts and deeds, all a form of rebellion. He finds himself writing “Down with Big Brother” numerous times. He knows when the “Thought Police” discover these thoughts he could be imprisoned or worse, he could become an “unperson”, a person who ceases to exist and who has no past.
The journey Orwell takes us on shows the main character s struggle for survival and ultimately the final extinction of his personality. He now believes that “two plus two is five”
and that “he loves Big Brother”
If you are looking for an uplifting , light story which is sure to have a happy ending ; leave this book on the shelf. However if you crave suspense, enjoy a journey to hell with a master story teller- you must read this book; read it and enjoy it, because “Big Brother is Watching You!”